Moving house is an exciting and stressful time for all of us. Leaving behind the area you know and love together with everyone in it is tough enough as it is – but what about all the packing and organising prior to the move?
While it is difficult to ensure that you settle in nicely and get comfortable as soon as possible, we can make your life a little bit easier by reducing the number one stress factor: packing, shipping, and actually moving.
Here is a handful of the best ways to make your move a lot more efficient by cutting the biggest costs. So sit down with a calming cup of something, clear your mind, and get ready for the big move right away.
#1 Pack the least used items first
The first things you’d do before the actual move is, of course, to pack all your belongings. No matter how you choose to organise it, try to pack the items you’re least likely to need first. That way, whatever you really need is always at the top of the box and you save yourself a lot of time and hassle when you finally arrive at your new home.
The same goes for the boxes with the least used items when it’s time to stack them in the van, by the way; make sure the most important ones are at the front so that you don’t have to wait for everything to be unloaded before you’re able to get ahold of your toothbrush.
Another great tip for those arriving a bit late in the evening is to prepare a box of stuff you’ll need as soon as you get there. This may include a few plates, some cutlery, toiletries, bed sheets, and chargers so that you don’t have to dig through all of your belongings when you’re tired and just want to go to bed.
#2 Find a helping hand
We’ve talked about how you should pack to save time, so let’s take a look at how you can save some money while you’re at it. One of the biggest expenses of moving house is, undoubtedly, the transportation; try to ask someone you know if you don’t have too much stuff as it will save you a lot of money. It helps to offer some sort of food as a thank you, though, or even compensate them with some cash as it will still cost you less.
If you have a lot of heavy furniture you may have to ask for help from the professionals. Use Shiply to get an overview of quotes so that you’re able to find the best possible price for the move – and remember that some companies charge a lot more than others.
Ask the movers to place the boxes in the middle of the room instead of putting them against the wall, by the way, as it saves you the hassle of moving the boxes when you’re assembling furniture.
#3 Sell and donate as much as possible
Some might prefer to keep a lot of their stuff in order to save money while others sell it to equip their home with new furniture. How you do it is up to you, but remember to get rid of everything you’re not absolutely sure that you’ll need.
The sooner you do it, the less it will be for you to pack – and you can tick one more thing off your to-do list.
When you work from home, it doesn’t matter what you do, but it matters where you do it. Or, rather, it matters what is in the area that you are working in. Did you know that every piece of furniture in your office space plays a role in your productivity, and therefore your potential and potential earnings? There are a few small things, and few big things that make an office functional, beyond function comes personal tastes and what works for your budget. However, psychology experts and interior designers alike champion using specific colours, textures, and lighting to get the most from your space.
As is commonly mentioned, most of us aren’t getting close to the amount of daylight we need, and there are plenty of vitamin deficiencies that go along with that. But, it is even more difficult for office workers who work in sky-high buildings, with maximum artificial light and minimal windows. If you can do so, place your desk as close to a window as possible. Luckily most people who are working from home can make the most of their available natural light sources. If you need an extra reason to move things around, workers who sit close to natural light sources have better sleep quality and higher productivity. If you happen to have thick curtains over your window, take these down and replace them with something that lets the light in or if privacy is no issue, take them down and allow the light flood the room.
Bringing Nature In
Natural textures, plants, wooden furniture and landscape photos kick your brain into action. Way back when we had to play hunter-gatherer, fruits and veggies played a big part in our diets, and so when we see them in our environment, our brain goes into overdrive. Sound terrible? Well actually, it ups motivation, enthusiasm, and productivity. So, filling your office up with plants – real and fake is a great idea. Trailing ivy, easy to care for succulents and cactus all give you that green boost. Nature textures and colours also help. Desks like those from www.oakfurnitureuk.co will provide you with the wooden grains, the softness and nothing beats that woody smell. To compliment your wood desk add some stone or granite plant pots. Cork Boards for helping you keep well organised are a great idea too. You can bring in some fresh smells also, woodland candles, fresh flowers or even room sprays.
The Science behind the Green
Having real plants has some significant advantages over the fakes ones. While visually you’re getting the basics from a fake you’re still missing out. Plants help purify the air; they reduce dust, CO2 and up to 87% of other toxins. Amazingly plants release up to 97% of the water that they consume, so the time you spend caring for them will be repaid by keeping your room just humid enough – less stuffy noses. NASA says that plants remove up to 97% of volatile organic compounds (air toxins) every 24 hours, so they never stop working. Since the increase in people working from home, the ability to online shop and generally people spending 90% of their time indoors, the green that we bring into the home promotes health. An Agricultural University in Norway found that people who work in offices with plants see a 60% drop in sickness. Not everyone loves the idea of adding things into the office that need a lot of care, so here are some suggestions of plants that would work in an office environment with minimal fuss:
Boston Fern – need a quick misting once a week, and the soil needs to remain damp.
Chinese Evergreen – reds and green, works great in low light, happy in warm places (offices notable warm from hot computers).
Snake Plant – These work wonders for people who might continually forget to water their plants, for weeks.
Peace Lily – great for low-maintenance care, excellent at cleaning the air. Keep the soil damp but not too wet, too much sunlight will turn the leaves brown.
Bamboo Palm – this one can grow pretty big if left to its own devices, they work in any lighting and only need moderate watering.
Keep it Clean
There is probably nothing worse than getting up full of beans and ready to work, but then when you get to your desk, you’ve left it cluttered and messy. You then end up spending some of that motivation and energy cleaning up before you can start work. At the end of every day, pack things away, put bits of rubbish in the bin or recycling and set up the desk ready for the next day. Pick up some files, pen pots, desk organisers and other things to help you stop the clutter.
White is always going to be high on the agenda, after all, it’s clean, bright and works great with natural lighting. But after that? Consider colours that you see in nature – some of which might surprise you. Of course, the blues of the sky, green of the grass, they are visible and go without saying. What about reds, pinks, and lavenders? Earthy tones, browns, stones, slates, all up for grabs. Try not to stray too far what you would find naturally, say on a walk in the woods or across a sandy beach. Use your wooden desk and a couple of plants as your inspiration and go from there.
Where the Wild Things Are
If you currently have very bare walls, think about getting some artwork or your favourite photographs framed and create something emotive and exciting. While you might prefer to buy a large photo of the ocean, making something yourself will add a nice personal touch to your work-space. Try to stick with an outdoor theme, beaches, woods, skies, and landscapes are going to work perfectly with the rest of the decor. Try and get it at your eye level, so that when you glance away from the screen or the notebooks, you see something refreshing and pretty. It can give you a boost of motivation.
We are a generation of social media lovers, we live our lives through a screen and never seem to be fully aware of whats going on in the world around us. I, like many others love social media and have to use it for my job but, sometimes a little cleanse from all things digital is whats needed. I thought I would pop together a post to show a few ways to switch off from the digital world and be more open to being back in ‘life’.
Write A Letter
This is something that has been completely lost on us. We are a generation of whatsapp, messenger and iMessagers. We would rather email someone, send them a tweet or post on their wall than sending them a meaningful hand written letter. When I was younger I really used to love sending letters to my sister who lives in Australia, it would mean I had to sit down and take the time to write down everything I had been doing, think about what questions I wanted to ask about her and just give her a really good update on my life. I absolutely loved the anticipation of waiting for her reply. Now, I can just send a quick message, see she has read it and know the reply is fast approaching. I miss writing letters as I think they helped build a better relationship between us, where as now it just seems like a quick pop in. The great thing is I have started writing letters to people again and it really feels like I’m taking time out to show someone I care.
Letters are simple to do, we all have the tools at home to create one – A pen, paper and your hands. An envelope always comes in handy too for when sending, the problem is because no one writes anymore we don’t really have them easily available. bestbuyenvelopes.uk is a great place to buy envelopes for anything you want to send, whether it be a letter or a parcel. They offer the largest range of coloured envelopes, bubble envelopes, business envelopes, plastic envelopes and packaging supplies in Europe. They also offer a great personal service and absolutely pride themselves on it. You can order a sample of the product you want to order and something I love even more about them is the fact you can get personalised envelopes printed with your own design, which makes the person recieving it get that extra special touch.
Leave Your Devices At Home
Sometimes we don’t need to have our phones, iPads and tablets with us. If you are going out to do something that you know you won’t need it, just leave it.
I often go to the park with my friends to chill out, catch up or let the kids play. I leave my phone at home because I want to be in the moment and not get distracted by wanting to scroll down my news feed, watch Snapchat stories or see who’s posting what on Instagram. It really gives you a sense of liberation over the fact you feel slightly free, you can have a good chinwag and enjoy the company of others.
Don’t Take Your Phone To Bed
I was so guilty of this for so long. I would take my phone to bed and then spend a couple of hours just scrolling through various things, taking Buzzfeed quizes and playing games. I would even wake up in the middle of the night and reach for my phone straight away, which made me find it harder to sleep.
I have now stopped doing this and leave my phone in the living room at night now. Since then I feel like I can really relax and enjoy a better nights sleep. I’ve also noticed I don’t wake up in the middle of the night either now, so I must have been waking up because I knew my phone was there and gave me something to do.
Read A Book
I used to absolutely love reading, I made sure I read at least three books a week, it was a great way to relax as I could go into my own peaceful little world. I now don’t read as much as I used to but I still try to make sure I’m reading regularly.
I turn off everything so it’s peaceful, leave my phone, laptop and iPad on the table and immerse myself into my book world. It makes me feel at ease, I have no temptation to look on my devices and I find it quite self indulgent.
When I do these little things I feel as though I have been able to live more in life, I feel like I have been able to take my time to show people I care and that I have given myself a bit of self love.
Do you have any tips on how to take mini digital detoxes?
We have finally got to that point where the flat is almost complete… Yay!! But, now that means we have to buy little trinkets to go in and around it that suit with how we’ve decorated. We’ve gone really fresh, light and airy with every room as it makes the small space we have feel bigger.
I have been looking at different websites and found The Old English Company, who have a great range of products I want, so I thought I would put together a wish list.
Buy Me Pizza Mug – £9.95
Herbs and Spices Tea Towel – £8.75
Big Spoon, Little Spoon Pillowcases – £19.95
Lets Sleep In Print – £13.95
Map of London Print – £13.95
Black and Pearlescent A5 Planner – £11.95
Hot Mess Make Up Pouch – £12.95
I’m a little in love with all of these items, especially the Map of London Print as it’s so nice to see where I live written in words. I think it will be a nice and quirky addition into the front room and is different to any other map print I have seen. I also love the Let’s Sleep In Print and Big Spoon, Little Spoon Pillowcases as we are a household of sleep lovers and I feel like having these in the bedroom shall definitely give us an excuse to justify our actions.
The Buy Me Pizza Mug has got to be my favourite, as it’s something I say to my partner all the time! I think it would be a great little cup just to display on the kitchen windowsill. As for the Tea Towel, I don’t really need to say much as it just screams kitchen and we never cook a meal without any herbs or spices.
I also added a couple of self indulgent things into my wish list in the form of the planner, which I think is a really lovely design with the pearlescent writing on the front and sleek black cover. It’s definitely my style and I am a sucker for all sorts of planners and notebooks. Then of course the make up bag is just too cute to pass up, I have many little bags like this and I like to keep day to day essentials in them so I can just grab it, pop in my bag and go.
On a side note, The Old English Company is celebrating World Stationery Day on the 25th of April with a fabulous giveaway. They are giving away all 4 of the planners pictured above, which if you can see has one of my wish list items in *Goes to enter straight away*.
All you have to do to enter is head on over to their competition page, grab the entry email and then send them a message telling them what your favourite item from the site is. It’s pretty simple and only takes a few moments of your time with the winner being chosen at random on the 26th of April 2018.
What do you think of the products I have chosen?